Photographing graffiti is not an easy task. That a picture contains amazing artworks is not enough to make it a great photo as well, which is proven by many artists who take shit photos of their great pieces on a daily basis (with an exception here or there). Luckily Leo, better known as Startape on Flickr, is someone who knows how it is done. His graffiti photography ranges from the cleanest, sharpest pictures to a more artistic take with selected colors and HDR techniques.
I think it’s the pleasure of exploring new pieces and meeting the artists, having conversations with them. Thanks to graffiti I was able to travel in France and the rest of Europe.
The French Startape started his graffiti photography back in ’93 with an analog camera and no internet, which made it harder to find good places to shoot. He began with small places and halls of fame aorund his town, but since six years he’s been completely focussing on his passion.
Exploring new pieces and places is one of the great joys Startape finds in photographing graffiti. Startape: “I think it’s the pleasure of exploring new pieces and meeting the artists, having conversations with them. Thanks to graffiti I was able to travel in France and the rest of Europe.”
I like graffiti for all that it stands for, the whole street art thing is different for me.
It’s also noticable that Startape is in every right place. Startape: ” I also like to discover new places and explore abandoned grounds, I love Urbex! But I don’t like street art (Stencils, posters,etc)! I like graffiti for all that it stands for, the whole street art thing is different for me. That I’ve known graffiti for so long, and street art only since a while plays a roll as well.”
When I was writing this article I had to pick some pieces from Startape’s photostream and I was already lost in the choice. It’s one after another amazing piece. When we ask Startape who his favorite writers are, it’s no wonder he has a hard time just naming a few artists. Startape “DAIM, LOOMIT, MADC (Who I think is the best female writer). In France I also like the works of Trash, but also Reso, Spazm, Keyler… There are so, so many great writers all over the world!”
Have a dive in Startape’s Flickr Photostream for more amazing graffiti and photography!